Today started off downright splendid. A gorgeous Oklahoma sunrise followed by one of the most productive mornings of writing (on tribal taxation) imaginable. Cranking away at a pace that would make most Indian Law nerds blush, I was also multi-tasking by thinking ahead to dinner. In the late morning, I invited my parents up to join us for tonight’s dinner and filled my crockpot with a yummy Red Rice dish.

And then, it happened. The thing that was inevitably going to happen for the last four plus years. Our family’s first dog bit. Or, as I have described it: the 4,754th time I have had to say something like: “get out of the dog’s face, quit messing with the dog, stop terrorizing the sweet girl, she doesn’t want to play like that.” This time, I didn’t have to say it. Starla, the 4 year old black lab girl settled the score.

What did my 12 year old son do to “deserve” it, this time? He took Starla’s nose in between his hands and rubbed it back and forth and back and forth with increasing speed, using her snout as if to manually start a fire. For no apparent reason. Because he is twelve and a tad hard-headed. Lesson presumptively learned. If only all life lessons could come with such relative ease. Especially life lessons about health and wellness.

That Red Rice dish in the crockpot? Turned out great!

I “discovered” red rice this past year after going vegan to radically reduce cholesterol as you can read in my health story. Red rice came during my search for variety and was a bonus food since I was also trying to stay away from foods with a high glycemic index (meaning it converts to sugar easily and can drive up triglycerides). In terms of the health pecking order for rice, Red wins, hands down. Compared to all other rice variations (especially white rice), it’s higher in protein and fiber AND it packs a powerful punch of antioxidants.

In terms of taste, it’s savory and if you make a one pot wonder with various ingredients, you’ll think it has meat in it, when it doesn’t. Hearty. Yummy. In the midst of the unexpected chaos of the day, I was particularly happy to have a meal to come home to with very little effort. Here’s what I threw together:

Red Rice Rendezvous

Cooked 4 hours in a crock pot:

3 cups of dry red rice

1 quart of vegetable broth

2 table spoons of chopped garlic

1 red onion chopped

1 can black beans

1/2 cup of lentils

2 chopped roma tomatoes

Add up to 3 cups of water as it cooks, as needed (rice absorbs a lot)

1 large tablespoon of tandoori spice (but any savory spice will do)

1 teaspoon of basil flakes

1 tablespoon of Gluten Free Soy Sauce

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